Homeward Journey, Part 3: Bruin Point

Sprocket and I camped just down the hill from Strawberry Peak. In the morning, we meandered along Reservation Ridge Road and tried to descend a road through a canyon. Just before we reached the flats before US 6, the road was gated and locked. We turned around and headed back for Reservation Ridge Road and were treated to the happy sounds of a flock of grazing sheep.

Reservation Ridge Road

We finally left Reservation Ridge Road onto US 191 and descended towards Price, Utah. From Price, we headed for Bruin Point, another Utah 2,000′ prominence peak. The views just got better and better after we passed through Sunnydale and the road wound up to the summit at 10,184′.

Highway 191

Utah 123

Big Horn Sheep

Bruin Point Road

A pretty sweet aerial mining tram hung above the road most of the way up the mountain. I can’t find too much specific information but it looks like the mine was for natural asphalt. According to Carbon County’s US GenWeb site, the mine was established in the 1890s and closed in 1898. Between 1903 and the mid-1930s the mine operated occasionally, sometimes selling its product for 50% of its value to try and bolster the market. Today, you can still spot some tram cars on the cables as you drive up the valley.

End of Arial tram

Arial tram station

After hitting the summit of Bruin point, we headed back to the highway and turned for home.

Utah 124

Homeward Adventure, Part 2: Strawberry Peak

From Strawberry Reservoir, we headed to our next objective, Strawberry Peak. Strawberry Peak is one of Utah’s 80+ peaks with 2,000′ of prominence. Sprocket hasn’t been up for much hiking lately so we were on a Jeep based peakbagging adventure!

Strawberry Reservoir

Ashley National Forest

Sprocket and Beth

Sheep dog and puppies

Ashley National Forest

Sprocket

After quite a bit of meandering around, we approached Strawberry Peak just as the sun was turning everything gold.

Ashley National Forest sunset

Strawberry Peak

We drove right the summit of the 10,335′ peak. What amazing views all around!

Jeep on the summit of Strawberry Peak

Strawberry Peak Benchmark

Strawberry Peak views

Olallie Butte

A few weeks ago, Sprocket and I headed east into the Cascades to hike Olallie Butte. It’s a nice mostly treed hike before scrambling up the last bits of scree to the summit. Olallie is one of Oregon’s 2,000′ prominence peaks and the high point of Wasco county is just off its northeastern flank.

Olallie Butte Trail

Hiking Olallie Butte

Mt. Jefferson dominates the southern view, actually obscuring Three Finger Jack, Mt. Washington and South Sister, with Middle and North Sisters peaking over her eastern shoulder.

Mt. Jefferson from Olallie Butte

Sprocket and Mt. Jefferson

Mt. Hood

Olallie Butte North Ridge

Sprocket on snow

Grass and Prairie Mountains: Oregon 2,000′ Prominence Peaks

Last week, we spent some time hanging out near Alsea, Oregon. After spending sometime browsing Peakbagger, I picked a couple of mountains to summit. Grass Mountain and Prairie Mountain are both considered “prominent” peaks. (Here’s a very in depth article on prominence if you’re curious). Oregon has 74 peaks with at least 2,000′ of prominence; Grass Mountain ranks 57th and Prairie Mountain ranks 47th.

Sprocket and I set off first for Grass Mountain. The road was currently being used for logging operations and was in really great shape. Instead of hiking the closed road to the summit, I opted to head directly up the ridge. From the mid-1950s to 1970, the mountain was home to a fire lookout although all remnants except four concrete foundation blocks are gone. The trees have grown up around the mountain and there isn’t much to be seen from the summit. Sprocket, however, enjoyed a good sniff:

Sprocket

Instead of returning down the ridge the way we came, we headed out the road. This lead around the south side of the summit affording me views of the southern Coast Range.

Wildflowers

Grass Mountain

Seed Tree

Oregon Woods

View from Grass Mountain flanks

As I looped back around to the northwestern side of the mountain, I was delighted to catch a glimpse of Mt. Hood:

Mt. Hood

Then, I noticed Mt. Jefferson peeking out as well:

Mt. Jefferson

We backtracked down the mountain and then headed south of Alsea to Prairie Mountain. I expected to have to hike to the summit, just like on Grass Mountain. Instead, however, I discovered that the gate two miles shy of the summit was open. At the top, I saw someone working on radio equipment so I grabbed a quick photo and headed back out.

Prairie Mountain view

Wildflowers

In all, it was an awesome day to be out playing in the Coast Range!